Be a Card Carrying Member

I see this far less than years ago but there are still some who ask for dive equipment and/or tanks without any proof of certification. Some have simply forgotten their card. Others have never had one but wherever they had been diving, allowed it.

Some of the certifying organizations have a system where proof of certification can be found through an online system. Others do not and that causes a problem. Some divers argue that they have been diving for decades and others say that the place they were at last year never checked.

Perhaps this analogy will help better understand why showing your certification card is necessary. You show up at XYZ car rental and tell them you don’t have your driver’s license. They say you can’t rent a car. You say you have been driving for over 35 years. They say you still can’t rent a car without proof of a license. You say the ABC rented last year and you showed them your license. They say you still can’t rent a car without proof.

I don’t know anywhere that would rent someone a car without a driver’s license. It is very simple. If you want to drive or dive just make sure you have your license.





New Retail Area








After spending a long time considering what to do, we finally decided to tear down the wall.  The left picture shows before and the right picture after. It took a few days planning and a few days of work mainly in the evening but we did it. The biggest challenge was keeping the dust contained when breaking a concrete block wall. It went surprisingly well.

The store now has a much more open feeling and a lot more space. The new area now has all the wetsuits and related items with womens’ on the left side and men’s on the right. There are still a few more new displays and lighting to be added as soon as they arrive here on Bonaire.


Our New Dock Ladder/Steps

We just installed our new dock ladder which closer resembles a staircase. Many improvements including more steps, better angle and a platform to aid in putting on and taking off equipment. Made locally by a professional welder, this ladder is made from heavy duty stainless steel. So far every diver has said it is the best dive ladder they have used.


Our Dive Boat is Back

After a very traumatic morning that started at 3 am nearly 8 weeks ago and ended with broken ribs, broken boat, broken engine and broken spirit, our other dive boat is back in service. All repairs are done including a brand new coat of bottom paint.

Along with my dive staff, I am very happy to see this is finished. It was a lot of hard weeks without it.

The first picture shows the boat being put back in the water the same place is was sadly towed out. The second picture is tying up at out dock once again.


Dive masks at Carib Inn’s retail store provide quality and value

navigatorMany divers who visit our store ask how we can sell masks so inexpensively. There are two answers to that. One, we don’t make as much profit as other stores. Two, we search out deals on masks along with quality. There are many companies which are not well known who wholesale masks that come from the same source as the well known manufactures. Because they don’t have a huge advertising budget (some do no advertising at all) they can sell these masks at far lower prices. The mask is the same. Just the name is different.

So the next time you visit our store here at the Carib Inn on Bonaire, don’t be fooled by low prices. The quality of the masks is just as good as any other.


DEMA dive show a success

Dick Batchelder

Dick Batchelder, long time compressor man


Lowell Dreyfus – founder of Trident dive equipment


Suuz – Scubado Rags


Evelyn Dudas – the first woman to dive the Andrea Doria!


Cathy Church – world famous photograper


Capt Spencer Slate – well known Florida Keys dive operator


Bonnie Cardone – Skin Diver Magazine and now a novelist

DEMA, where most of the larger manufacturers and many of the smaller equipment suppliers display their wares, is always a lot of fun – both to see the new gear and also to talk with and visit many of the people in the industry that I have known over the years. Here are photos of a few of the people I saw this year:


This Weekend’s STINAPA Birding Event is at Bonaire’s LVV

There’s another opportunity to enjoy a STINAPA birding event at Bonaire’s LVV facility this Saturday, November 19, 2016.

Bonaire has an abundance of shorebirds.During the fall and winter months, Bonaire hosts many migratory birds who visit the island for either over-wintering, or as a resting spot before they continue a longer migration. Many of these special bird species can be found at Bonaire’s LVV wastewater treatment plant, as there is always a fresh water supply for them.

STINAPA will lead another birdwatching trip at LVV.

This Saturday, from 4:30 to 6:00 PM, there is another opportunity for bird watching with STINAPA at this location just off Kaminda Lagoen.  Very rare species of birds for the ABC islands have also been spotted in this area. During just the last weeks, the Southern Lapwing, Northern Waterthrush and the Sora were spotted in the area. During last month’s birding event, about 30 Yellow-billed Cuckoos were spotted.

What to bring.

Bring binoculars (if don’t have binoculars, STINAPA can provide you a pair to use), drinking water, and good walking shoes.

Register your participation.

Please call STINAPA at 717-8444 to make your reservation. There are no costs involved, but donations are always welcome. Meet the leader next to the wastewater tanks.

(Source:  STINAPA via Bonaire Insider on




View the Just-Launched Carib Inn Video

The Carib Inn Video.

We are delighted today to share with you our just-launched video featuring Bonaire’s fantastic diving and, of course, the Carib Inn.

We invite you to take a few moments and watch our new video.  For those who have stayed and dove with us in the past, we’re sure it will bring back quite some memories.

For those whom we have not yet welcomed to our inn, we look forward to showing you why Carib Inn has been a favorite since 1980!


If you enjoyed reading this update and wish to receive future editions, sign up for the Carib Inn News!

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Bonaire’s Reforestation Efforts Are Coming to Fruition

Why does Bonaire need to continue reforestation efforts?

Many terrestrial animals, introduced to the island hundreds of years ago, consume the native plants on Bonaire. When droughts occur, as Bonaire has experienced over the last two years, the munching of the plants can far outweigh the plant’s ability to grow and develop, many times causing native plants to die, and then allowing more invasive species to take over. Over time, deforestation of the island’s natural flora can cause weather changes–making the island hotter and drier, simply exacerbating the problem. To combat this, Bonaire has been involved with reforestation efforts for several years now.

Reforestation on Klein Bonaire.

Over the past several years, STINAPA has been at the forefront of reforestation efforts on Klein Bonaire. Volunteers have worked hard, carting water to Klein Bonaire in boats to water the baby plants until they become self-sufficient. The efforts have been successful, and it is hoped that the skyline of Klein Bonaire will soon start to be higher and greener.

Reforestation on Bonaire.

But what about the main island? Here, grazing goats, pigs, and donkeys consume native plant species at an alarming rate. STINAPA has held Tree-Planting Festivals in Washington Park for several years now, and this year’s event is coming up later this month. But it’s not enough and the island needs greater efforts.

Echo Foundation and the Dry Forest.

Bonaire's lora, the Yellow-Shouldered Amazon Parrot

Bonaire’s lora, the Yellow-Shouldered Amazon Parrot

Echo Foundation is well known now for its monumental efforts to help save Bonaire’s Yellow-Shouldered Amazon parrots, more commonly known locally as loras, as the species is vulnerable to poaching and habitat destruction. To assist the parrots, and also the prikichi, the Brown-Throated Parakeet found on Bonaire, Echo is doing its best to help reforest the naturally occurring Dry Forest Ecosystem on the island.

How to reforest the Dry Forest?

With a mandate, support, and funding from Bonaire’s island government, Echo has plans to accomplish this lofty goal by reforesting 20,000 trees in ten reforestation areas, from which all exotic herbivores (goats, donkeys and pigs) are excluded.

The young trees are ready to be planted.

The young trees are ready to be planted.

Bonaire’s visitors can help with the reforestation efforts.

Now, with the rainy season upon us, Echo is actively planting the young trees it has been nurturing for some time.  On Saturday, November 19, 2016, from 8:00 AM until 12:00 Noon, they will host a Tree Planting Day in Washington-Slagbaai National Park.

Join in Echo’s tree-planting day in Washington-Slagbaai National Park.

To join in and have some good, old-fashioned fun at the same time, meet at the entrance to Washington Park at 8:00 AM. Transportation will be provided from the entrance of the park to the work site, or just look for Echo’s vehicle.  Refreshments and snacks will be provided to all planters, but those participating should wear closed-toe shoes and bring sun-screen, a water bottle, and gardening tools, if you have them.

Register your participation.

Please let Echo know you will be helping out.  Simply telephone them at 785-4128 or email

"We live by our nature; let's work together for the sustainable development of Bonaire."

“We live by our nature; let’s work together for the sustainable development of Bonaire.”

Can’t plant, but want to know more?

For those who can’t join in the planting, but would like to know more about Bonaire’s reforestation efforts, everyone can join in a free, informative evening at CIEE on Wednesday, November 9th, 2016 at 7:00 PM.  During this presentation, Quirijn Coolen (Reforestation Warden at Echo) and Johan van Blerk (Nursery Manager at Echo) will be explaining the foundation’s part in the reforestation project and provide additional information about the planning, management, and community involvement in this important project.


(Source:  Echo Foundation, CIEE Bonaire via Bonaire Insider on


Carib Inn’s Yearly Photo Contest Winner is Marilyn Forshey Pollock

Congratulations to Marilyn Forshey Pollack!

Marilyn is the winner in Carib Inn’s Yearly Photo Contest

Carib Inn is happy to announce that Marilyn Forshey Pollock has won the Yearly Photo Contest with her beautiful image of a seahorse. She has won two unlimited shore dive packages for her next visit to Bonaire.


Interesting facts about seahorses:

Why are they called seahorses?

Seahorse is the name given to 54 species of small marine fishes in the genus Hippocampus. “Hippocampus” comes from the Ancient Greek word hippos meaning “horse” and kampos meaning “sea monster”. The word “seahorse” can also be written as two separate words (sea horse), or hyphenated (sea-horse). Having a head and neck suggestive of a horse, seahorses also feature segmented bony armor, an upright posture and a curled prehensile tail.

Where can I find seahorses?

Seahorses are mainly found in shallow tropical and temperate waters throughout the world, from about 45°S to 45°N and live in sheltered areas such as sea-grass beds, estuaries, coral reefs, or mangroves. Four species are found in Pacific waters from North America to South America. In the Atlantic, H. erectus ranges from Nova Scotia to Uruguay. H. zosterae, known as the dwarf seahorse, is found in the Bahamas.

Physical aspects of seahorses

Seahorses range in size from 1.5 to 35.5 cm (0.6 to 14.0 in). They are named for their equine appearance with bent necks and long-snouted heads followed by their distinctive trunk and tail. Although they are bony fish, they do not have scales, but rather thin skin stretched over a series of bony plates, which are arranged in rings throughout their bodies. Each species has a distinct number of rings. Seahorses swim upright, another characteristic not shared by their close pipefish relatives, which swim horizontally. Razorfish are the only other fish that swim vertically. They swim upright propelling themselves by using the dorsal fin. The pectoral fins located on either side of the head are used for maneuvering. They lack the caudal fin typical of fishes. Their prehensile tail can only be unlocked in the most extreme conditions. They are adept at camouflage with the ability to grow and reabsorb spiny appendages depending on their habitat.

Unusual among fish, a seahorse has a flexible, well-defined neck. It also sports a crown-like spine or horn on its head, termed a “coronet,” which is distinct for each species.

Seahorse locomotion

Seahorses swim very poorly, rapidly fluttering a dorsal fin and using pectoral fins (located behind their eyes) to steer. The slowest-moving fish in the world is H. zosterae (the dwarf seahorse), with a top speed of about 5 ft (1.5 m) per hour. Since they are poor swimmers, they are most likely to be found resting with their prehensile tails wound around a stationary object. They have long snouts, which they use to suck up food, and their eyes can move independently of each other like those of a chameleon.

Learn more about this unique creature at

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